New figures from the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) show that of the 100,853 people stopped by police and breath tested for drink driving in June 2010, 5,652 (5.6%) tested positive, or refused or failed a breath test. That compares to 5.8% during the same month last year. However, the incidence of drink driving by people under 25 is up on last year -- from 5.9% in June 2009 to 6.4% in June 2010.
While the news about an increase in drink driving among under 25s is worrying, there is room for a little optimism elsewhere. The percentage of drivers who failed a field impairment test to check for drugs fell from just over one third in 2009 to 22.3% in 2010.
Commenting on the figures, ACPO lead on roads policing Chief Constable Mick Giannasi said:
"The results are generally consistent with last year. While it is pleasing to see that the number of reported collisions was down on last year, alcohol continues to be a major cause of death and injury on our roads.
"The cost of this is immense, not only in human terms, but also in terms of the financial impact. It is estimated that the cost of each fatal collision is £1.9 million and the cost of a serious injury collision is £188,000.
"The Police Service is committed to tackling drink and drug driving and the message we need to get across is that drinking and driving don't mix. We will continue in our efforts to make the roads safer for all users."